Jackson Ordered To Fund Ex-wife’s Custody Battle

R&B/pop king Michael Jackson was ordered to pay $60,000 in attorney fees for his ex-wife as she pursues a custody case against the superstar. Superior Court Judge Robert A. Schnider gave the singer until Sept. 28th to meet the order. He did not rule on whether to grant Deborah Rowe visitation rights to the couple?s children, Prince Michael and Paris. Rowe had sought almost $200,000 toward her attorney fees but Judge Schnider declined to award it, stating that she has millions of dollars, which she received from the divorce settlement. Marta Almli, an attorney for Rowe, said after court that Jackson stopped making the annual payments in the divorce settlement in 2003. He also sued Rowe in 2004 for allegedly breaching a confidentiality agreement. That lawsuit is pending, but the legal costs, coupled with the halting of her divorce settlement money, have ?been very draining on her funds,? Almli said. Rowe, a former nurse for Jackson?s dermatologist, married him in 1996 but filed for divorce in 1999 and later gave up custody rights. She asked a judge to reinstate them in 2003 after Jackson had been arrested on child molestation charges. In February, a state appeals court ruled that her parental rights had not been properly relinquished under the law.

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